Tourism up in EU in 2016

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Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union (EU), has said that the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments in the 28-member bloc last year was estimated to be more than 2.8 billion, up 2.0 percent compared with 2015.

According to a Eurostat statement, Spain was the top destination with 454 million nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments in 2016.

This was a 7.8-percent increase compared with 2015, ahead of France (395 million), Italy (395 million), Germany (390 million), and the United Kingdom (292 million).

In 2016, the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments grew in almost all EU member states. Among them, Bulgaria witnessed the largest increase, which was 17.9 percent, followed by Slovakia (16 percent) and Poland (11.8 percent), it said.

However, France and the United Kingdom registered significant decreases compared with 2015, which were 4.6 percent and 4.5 percent respectively.

Since 2009, there has been a steady increase in the number of nights spent in tourist accommodation establishments in the EU, notably driven by the rise in the nights spent by non-residents of the member state, said the statement.

Almost every EU member state, except France, recorded an increase in the number of nights spent by non-residents, it said.

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